RealTime IT News

What's In a URL? Top 10 Web Sites Gain 13% In Value

Downtown Manhattan or Tokyo has quantifiable real estate rented or sold by space and everyone from Godzilla to Donald Trump knows the intrinsic value of that earth.

On the Web, anyone can have real estate space, but all space is not created equal, as shown by the handful of deals and the promise of more handshakes to follow that pushed the value of the top 10 Web sites up 13.8% the past week.

By now you may have heard of the cry "location, location, location," but a more appropriate phrase may be "habit, habit, habit" as people get into routines, repeat Web travel routes, glean and go. For anyone on the Web that means "what's new" or "where do you want to go today" may not be as important as "here's the stuff you always want to know."

But before bright-eyed entrepreneurs resign themselves to thinking Yahoo! won, or that AOL.com rules, consider that the Web isn't etched in stone and nobody "owns" customers or users despite what the marketers want you to believe. On the Web, "downtown Manhattan" can relocate to whatever site suits the user's current needs.

The Web is more like Hollywood, each site must continually provide the hits to get the hits or else people will go elsewhere.

On the Web, today's Tokyo can be tomorrow's Podunk. It happened to CompuServe, Prodigy, Delphi, and eWorld (now there's a lost city for sure).

The Mega Sites

Mecklermedia's Unique June 17 June 24 Percent June 17 June 24
WebSite Users Market cap or PMV* Market cap or PMV* change User User
Value Index (millions) (millions) (millions)   Value Value
Yahoo 31.4 $6,046 $6,885 13.9% $193 $220
AOL.com* 22.9 $2,200 $2,500 13.6% $96 $109
Excite 19.4 $1,784 $1,993 11.7% $92 $103
Netscape.com* 18.9 $1,500 $1,600 6.7% $79 $85
Microsoft.com* 17.4 $1,800 $2,000 11.1% $103 $115
MSN.com/Hotmail 14.8 $1,000 $1,250 25.0% $68 $85
GeoCities* 14.0 $450 $500 11.1% $32 $36
Lycos 13.7 $1,103 $1,253 13.6% $81 $91
Infoseek 13.3 $1,080 $1,049 -2.9% $82 $79
Disney.com* 8.5 $750 $1,000 33.3% $89 $118
TOTAL 174.1 $17,713 $20,030 13.1% $914 $1,040
AVERAGE 17.4 $1,771 $2,003 13.1% $91 $104

Alliances aren't what they always seem to be either as Disney plops assets and cash into Infoseek (NASDAQ:SEEK) and then launches its own Web portal today (June 25) called "Disney's Internet Guide," powered by Inktomi's (NASDAQ:INKT) search engine.

Where does Infoseek fit in that mouse hat?

In keeping with the family-friendly nature and marketing know-how that only a Disney, with its legions of deep thinkers, can bring to any effort, this site is located at the kid-friendly and Disney brand-extending URL, www.dig.com. Dig.com sounds more like dirt and sweat than fun. That's like Donald Trump calling Trump Tower "Donald Duck Tower," which in real estate of any nature should happen only where elephants fly.